Archive | October, 2013

Guest post: Spooky Happenings by Anglea Campbell

31 Oct

Today author Angela Cambell has joined me to celebrate the release of her paranormal romantic suspense novel, Something Wicked. Angela read her first romance novel at 16 and immediately attempted to write one, too. She is a newspaper reporter with more than 15 years experience as a general assignment reporter, features editor and graphic designer and has also worked as a production assistant in TV and film. Angela lives in the Southeast USA with her rescue cat. Welcome and happy publication day Angela!

The spookiest things that have ever happened to me have happened in graveyards.

Here’s a really strange fact you probably never wanted to know: I actually visit the cemetery a fair amount, having lost my mom when I was 12. My best friend also lost her mom as a young adult, and she’s buried not too far from mine. Now, we regularly go place fresh flowers on their graves. Nothing odd in that, right? Well, except we usually go late at night.

I know. Weird.

We’re both night owls, and I work long hours during the day. It’s not uncommon for us to meet up — safety in numbers — to go to the graveyard at night.

One time we were inside my car when the headlights captured a woman and a dog standing beside a grave. There was something unnatural about them that caused me to immediately stop and turn around. I mean, they had no flashlight and they weren’t near a car. “Did you see a woman and a dog standing there?” my friend immediately asked, but when we both turned back to look seconds later, they were gone. GONE!

Another time, I took my then-teenage niece with me to my mother’s grave, and she carried a voice recorder to try to capture EVPs — electronic voice phenomena — because we’d been watching ghost hunting shows and she thought it would be a fun experiment. Yes, she’s a bit weird, too — probably my influence, sadly. Anyway, she was playing back the sound and had asked, “Is there anyone here?” when a man’s raspy voice replied, “Leave.” Needless to say, I drove a little faster than necessary to do just that.

Did I also mention my best friend grew up in a haunted house? Yes, I have tons of stories I could share on this topic, but I won’t.

After reading all of that, it should be no surprise that I believe in ghosts.

It should be even less of a surprise that I enjoy writing about them. I should probably be terrified of ghosts — lord knows my best friend is — but I’m actually quite fascinated by them. And I love Halloween. I have three older brothers who forced me to watch scary movies as a child. I kind of blame them for making me this way. I don’t scare easily anymore, which is a good thing, I suppose, since I’m weird and traipse around graveyards at night.

If you’re in the mood for an entertaining ghost story on Halloween (or after!), let me recommend my new release, Something Wicked, which is the follow-up to my first Harper Impulse book, On the Scent. It has a feisty heroine, a hot hero, some funny ghosts — and not-so-funny ghosts  — and it’s set in one of the most beautiful, and spookiest, cities I’ve ever had the privilege to visit: Charleston, South Carolina. I also love the graveyard setting on this book’s cover.

Then again, I’m weird like that.

Thank you Angela and Happy Halloween!

Something Wicked is released today in ebook formats. Find out more at: http://www.harperimpulseromance.com/books/something-wicked

Something wicked this way comes…

All homicide detective Dylan Collins wants is a few hours of pleasure to take his mind off of the case haunting him. A serial killer is stalking the streets of Charleston, SC – a killer who calls himself The Grim Reaper. When the woman he’d just spent the night with turns up and offers her services as a psychic consultant on the case, his ardor quickly cools. Last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a con artist.

It doesn’t take long for Dylan to realize Alexandra King is the real deal – and the killer’s next target. Dylan’s protective instincts battle his reluctance to get too involved with a woman he isn’t sure he can trust. As they get closer to finding the killer, they also grow closer to one another, but will Alexandra’s secret agenda destroy their chance at happiness – if the killer doesn’t strike first?

You can read more about Angela Campbell and her book’s at her website, www.AngelaCampbellOnline.com, or connect with her on twitter @angelacampbel

Spooky recent releases – my Halloween hot picks

30 Oct

Today I thought I’d highlight some suitably spooky new reads to get you in the mood for Halloween!

Omens (Book 1 in The Cainsville Trilogy) by Kelly Armstrong ( Sphere – out now in hardback and ebook)

Olivia Jones has lived a life of privilege and good fortune. But on the eve of her wedding she discovers two shocking facts. One – she was adopted. Two – her biological parents are notorious serial killers. And now the secret’s out, she’s in immediate danger.

Running for her life, Liv must face reality in the most brutal and terrifying way. But then she is confronted with a tantalising hope – is it possible that her parents weren’t guilty of the murders after all? And if so, who did commit them?

Arriving at the remote town of Cainsville, Liv believes she has found the perfect place to hide while she uncovers the truth. But Cainsville is no ordinary town – and Liv’s arrival was no accident.

Afterworld by Lois Walden (Arcadia – Out now in paperback and ebook)

Meet four generations of the Duvalier family, for whom sugar cane is both their blessing and their curse. From patriarch Carter, who perishes before the novel begins after being hit in the head by an exploding manhole cover, and his indomitable holy-roller wife Lily, to their dysfunctional sons Winston and Steven, and their equally screwed-up grandchildren, the Duvaliers both dead and alive would do anything to keep their secrets hidden. With their world blown apart by the winds of Katrina, the gotterdammerung of their greed and lust, and the unearthly Afterworld, who plays with their fate, the tangled lives of these unforgettable characters create a novel of unimaginable beauty, dark humour and terrible tragedy.

 

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black (Orion – out now in paperback and ebook)

Tana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. It’s an eternal party, shown on TV 24 hours a day – gorgeous, glamorous, deadly! Because, once you pass through Coldtown’s gates, you can never leave…

 

 

The Dark Possession (Fairwick Chronicles 3) by Carol Goodman (Ebury – out now in paperback and ebook)

How far would you go for love?

Callie McFay is about to cross worlds and time…

Fairwick used to be populated by all manner of magical creatures but when a cabal of witches forced the closure of the last door to Fairie, the townsfolk had to choose sides. Now it is up to Callie to find a way back.

Her quest will take her far from home – to a 17th Century Scotland where the demon she once fell in love with is still very much a man…

The Lost Boys by Lilian Carmine (Ebury – out now in paperback and ebook)

Fate has brought them together. But will it also keep them apart?

Having moved to a strange town, seventeen-year-old Joey Gray is feeling a little lost, until she meets a cute, mysterious boy near her new home.

But there’s a very good reason why Tristan Halloway is always to be found roaming in the local graveyard…

 

The Medici Mirror by Melissa Bailey (Arrow – out now in ebook and paperback)

‘I have heard, but not believed, the spirits of the dead may walk again.’

A hidden room

When architect Johnny Carter is asked to redesign a long-abandoned Victorian shoe factory, he discovers a hidden room deep in the basement. A dark, sinister room, which contains a sixteenth-century Venetian mirror.

A love in danger

Johnny has a new love, Ophelia, in his life. But as the pair’s relationship develops and they begin to explore the mystery surrounding the mirror, its malign influence threatens to envelop and destroy them.

A secret history

The mirror’s heritage dates back to the sixteenth century, and the figure of Catherine de Medici – betrayed wife, practitioner of the occult, and known as the Black Queen.

Dark Witch (Book 1 in the Cousins O’Dwyer Trilogy) by Nora Roberts (Piatkus, 31st October)

Three cousins inherit a gift that will transform their lives . . .

Iona Sheehan has just taken the biggest gamble of her life. Leaving her job, her home and her family in Baltimore, she has come to Ireland in search of adventure – and answers. 

Iona has always felt a powerful connection to the home of her ancestors. So when her beloved grandmother confesses an extraordinary family secret, she can’t resist visiting County Mayo to discover the truth for herself. Arriving at the beautiful and atmospheric Castle Ashford, Iona is excited to meet her cousins, Connor and Branna O’Dwyer, for the first time. And when she lands a job at the local riding school she finds herself drawn against her will to its owner – the hot-tempered but charismatic Boyle McGrath. Perhaps in County Mayo she has found her true home at last. 

What Iona doesn’t realise is that her cousins have been expecting her for a long time. Connor, Branna and Iona have all inherited a powerful but dangerous gift from an ancestor known as the Dark Witch. And they are about to discover that some old legends can return to haunt the present . . . 

What are your Halloween reads?

Giveaway! Three copies of The Hex Factor – Dark Tide to be won!

29 Oct

Earlier today I reviewed Harriet Goodwin’s latest release, The Hex Factor – Dark Tide. Harriet’s publisher Stripes Publishing has kindly given me three copies of this fab book to give away!

Xanthe Fox has survived her first test as a teenage True Witch, conjuring fire to defeat her Hexing Witch enemy, Donna. But now she’s having to juggle developing her powers with her budding relationship with Saul. As life becomes ever more complicated, Xanthe picks up a powerful hex. Could it be that Donna and her cohorts are seeking revenge, or is a bigger plot brewing? It’s up to Xanthe to act before the most dangerous tide of evil is unleashed…

To enter this giveaway just leave a comment in the box below telling me what your special power would be if you were a witch! I’ll draw a winner using Random.org after the closing date. This giveaway is open to UK residents only and will close at midnight on Sunday 3rd November.

Good luck!

Book review: The Hex Factor – Dark Tide by Harriet Goodwin

29 Oct

Xanthe Fox has survived her first test as a teenage True Witch, conjuring fire to defeat her Hexing Witch enemy, Donna. But now she’s having to juggle developing her powers with her budding relationship with Saul. As life becomes ever more complicated, Xanthe picks up a powerful hex. Could it be that Donna and her cohorts are seeking revenge, or is a bigger plot brewing? It’s up to Xanthe to act before the most dangerous tide of evil is unleashed…

Today I’m delighted to be taking part in Harriet Goodwin’s blog tour for her latest release, The Hex Factor – Dark Tide. I thoroughly enjoyed the first book in the series, The Hex Factor when I read it last year so I was very excited when I was asked to be part of this tour.

Despite this being the second book in the series, I don’t think you need to worry if you want to start reading Xanthe’s adventures here as the background is filled in nicely in the first few chapters and all previous events are explained. The events of this story take place just two weeks after the end of the first book and it was great to be back with Xanthe again as she tries to come to terms with being a teenage True Witch.

As with the first book, I couldn’t put this one down; I love the way that Harriet Goodwin writes and her books are perfect for the 9-12 age group that they are aimed at (or sightly older readers like me who just love a good story!). As Xanthe tries to balance school work, keeping her new powers secret from her best friend and her developing relationship with Saul she’s faced with her biggest challenge yet as she picks up on a massively powerful hex!

Xanthe knows that hexing witch Donna is involved but I thoroughly enjoyed how Harriet Goodwin kept me guessing again as to what was really going on. The varied strands of the story focussing on Harriet and her friends, potential boyfriend and enemies really held my attention and had me turning the pages as quickly as I could. As the adventure moves to London, the action really hots up and I enjoyed reading about places that I visit nearly every day!

This is a story with excellent pace and I thought Xanthe really developed as a character in this book, taking charge of herself and rising to the challenge of her new powers but also learning a lot about friendship and relationships along the way. I was pleased to see Grandma Alice still in the picture too as I love her relationship with Xanthe.

Packed with adventure, magic and just the right amount of romance, Dark Tide is an ideal read as Halloween approaches and a great addition to The Hex Factor series. I hope there are many more adventures with Xanthe to come.

4/5

The Hex Factor is out now in paperback. Find out more here.

You can read about Harriet Goodwin and her books at: http://www.harrietgoodwinbooks.com/

Stop by again later today for a chance to win a copy of this book and please check out the other stops on the tour!

Short story spotlight: The Keepers – Sienna by Rae Rivers

28 Oct

Sienna Beckham is a powerful witch, and along with her four fiercely protective Keepers, it is her destiny to maintain the balance of nature in this world.

Tonight, it’s the town carnival and everyone will be there: Sienna’s family; her friends; her protectors. Archer.

Laughter and flirtation await.

But in a few hours, Sienna’s life will have changed forever and her powers stretched to their very limits.

For something is lurking in the forest…

Murder. Sorcery. Revenge.

And no one sees it coming.

Find out how it all began…

I really enjoyed Rae Rivers’ debut paranormal romance, The Keepers: Archer when it came out earlier this year and was excited to see that Rae had released a free prequel to the story focussing on leading lady Sienna Beckham.

Sienna is a witch and along with her four Keepers it’s her destiny to protect the unsuspecting human world from the darker forces in her world. This  excellent short story tells how Sienna came into her powers and fills in some more of the detail behind the ages old feud that Sienna can’t run from and the danger that threatens the fragile peace amongst the witches and their Keepers.

Set in the town of Rapid Falls, the action takes place on the night of the town carnival. As a standalone short story, Sienna is a gripping read and an ideal choice if you’re looking for a quick paranormal fix as Halloween approaches. It’s also an excellent introduction to The Keepers series and for readers like me who have already read the first book in the series it’s a great addition to the set and give me a better understanding of Sienna, her family and friends.

There are some dark and chilling scenes (the hall of mirrors scene had me especially spooked!) as Sienna and her four Keepers attend the town carnival and murder and mayhem ensue. I loved the twists that the story took and this is definitely an action-packed read. I don’t want to give anything away to those who have yet to dip into this fab series so I’ll keep this review short and sweet. The Keepers: Sienna is perfect for fans of paranormal romance, witches and magic and if  you haven’t tried a book in this genre before this is a great place to start as the ebook is free to download!

5/5

The Keepers: Sienna is out now in ebook formats. Find out more at: http://www.harperimpulseromance.com/books/the-keepers-sienna

Find out more about Rae and her writing at: http://www.raerivers.com/

Giveaway! Five copies of Holding Out for a Hero to be won!

25 Oct

Earlier this week I reviewed Amy Andrews brilliant new novel, Holding Out for a Hero and now I’m very excited to say that Amy’s lovely publisher has given me five ebook copies of the novel to give away to lucky readers!

This book is a 5* read for me and one of my favourite romances of the year so far!

When sensible schoolteacher Ella Lucas rides into her home town on a Harley and seduces the resident football hero, Jake Prince, she figures she can be forgiven and move on. After all, she’s just buried her mother.

Two years later, back in the city, their paths cross again but this time Jake is in the process of destroying her favourite dive bar. With her home facing a wrecker’s ball, her school being closed down and her 15-year-old brother hell bent on self-destruction, it’s the last straw. Throw in a dominatrix best friend who is dating a blue ribbon guy so straight he still lives at home with his mother, it’s no wonder the sanest person in Ella’s life is a dog.

With all this to contend with, the last thing Ella needs is Jake back in her life. But, as fate would have it, Jake is the only chance she has to save her school.

As the school football season heats up, old secrets threaten to surface and Ella takes on greedy developers, school boards and national tabloids. But can she save not just her home, her school and her brother, but also the reputation of the man she’s never been able to forget? And, more importantly, does she want to?

Holding Out for a Hero is a quirky, heartwarming tale of unlikely romance, friendship and family.

To enter this giveaway just leave a comment in the box below telling me who your ideal ‘hero’ is ;-)

 I’ll draw five winners using Random.org after the closing date. This giveaway is open internationally and will close at midnight on Thursday 31st October.

Good luck!

Guest Post: The Men of my Dreams by Poppy Dolan

23 Oct

Today I’m delighted to welcome Poppy Dolan to One More Page on the latest stop of her ‘There’s More to Life Than Cupcakes’ blog tour. When she’s not glued to her laptop, Poppy loves cooking, reading and getting emotional over reality TV. She is in her early thirties and lives just outside London with her husband. She writes in a coffee shop nicknamed Terence and also – when it’s not too chilly – in the shed. Today Poppy is sharing her thoughts on one of my favourite topics … Leading men :-) Welcome Poppy!

Leading men. Possibly the funnest bit about writing a novel: you can design hunks that fit exactly your dream specifications. And then spend hours with them. Yum.

In my new book There’s More to Life Than Cupcakes, I’ve got two main male characters that needed to be swoony in different but equally hot ways. So I had a little rifle through my celebrity crush filing cabinet. First up: Pete, the husband of my heroine Ellie, an accountant with a sense of humour. He’s strong, reliable, with a sensitive core. When I wrote Pete I had in my mind a mix of two Henrys: Henry Cavill, from the latest Superman movies, and the character Henry from Ugly Betty. I was after a mix of manly strength with a cute nerdy vibe and the two Henrys combined were a good template to follow. I didn’t give Pete Henry Cavill’s crazy abs, though: no normal bloke is capable of pulling those off.

My other male character, Joe, is younger and cheekier than Pete, and he’s a complete flirt. He’s also dangerously HOT. So Joe is a mix of Idris Elba (not in scary Luther mode, though) and Will Smith (especially in his Fresh Prince days) – always something funny to say and with a flash of something quite naughty in his eyes. Ding dong.

It’s always helpful to have a mental picture of your leading men. It means they don’t suddenly change eye colour in the fifth chapter, plus thinking about them is a nice reward after you’ve been slaving over a hot laptop all day! I can never spend too much time thinking about Idris Elba…

Thanks Poppy – I can’t wait to meet Pete and Joe!

There’s More To Life Than Cupcakes is published by Novelicious Books and is out now in ebook formats.

Ellie Redford has a husband, a job and a home. According to the rest of the world, it’s baby o’clock already. Shame life doesn’t come with a recipe…

Ellie knows that starting a family with lovely husband Pete would be an amazing adventure. Pete would make a brilliant dad and she’d have an excuse to eat shed loads of Cherry Bakewell. But Ellie’s bestie would rather she was up at 3am with a bottle of Malibu, not formula. And with redundancies looming, Ellie’s boss isn’t exactly going to throw her a shower if she disappears for a year, with pay.

While Ellie juggles her feelings (and everyone else’s) as competently as a drunken clown, she finds herself signing up for a baking class, alongside the young, free and sizzling hot Joe. As they work buns and shape tarts, is there more to their friendship than a shared appreciation of Paul Hollywood? 

Ellie’s soufflés may be rising, but her personal life is one big soggy mess. If she doesn’t make a decision soon, she may just lose everything that matters to her. Maybe it’s time to take off the pinny and face up to the truth: there’s more to life than cupcakes…

Find out more about Poppy at: http://www.noveliciousbooks.com/poppy-dolan

You can connect with Poppy on Twitter @poppydwriter and on Facebook at PoppyDolanBooks.

 

Book Review: Secrets of a Chalet Girl by Lorraine Wilson

22 Oct

Set in the exclusive Swiss ski resort of Verbier, the winter playground of the rich and famous, Secrets of a Chalet Girl is the second book in Lorraine Wilson’s fabulous Ski Season series. 
 

 I’ve been eagerly anticipating Lorraine Wilson’s next novella since I read the first book in the Ski Season series earlier this year and having loved Confessions of a Chalet Girl, I had high expectations for this follow up. I’m pleased to say that I wasn’t disappointed! The chalet girls are back and this time a game of ‘truth or dare’ sets the scene for new chalet girl Flora’s turn in the spotlight.

This novella is cleverly written as a stand-alone story but for those who have read Confessions, there are some familiar faces in this book and excellent updates on a number of the key characters which I really enjoyed. But in the main this is Flora’s story. I liked Flora straight away as she worries about the dare that she might be made to do!

Flora comes across as strong but shy and it’s clear from the start that she has been hurt in the past. As she’s challenged to ‘kiss the sexiest man in the room’, the story heats up when she sets sight on handsome Zac and feels an instant attraction to him. But Flora has come to Verbier to escape and Zac has his own set of issues to deal with so their relationship looks doomed from the start.

I liked that both characters in this novel were trying to forget the past and that despite their reluctance, the chemistry between them really sizzled on the page. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough to find out what would happen between them and how their secrets would be revealed. As the truth comes out there is a darker side to the story which I liked and felt gave depth to their relationship and I liked that Lorriane Wilson wasn’t afraid to tackle a serious issue head on.

Set against a backdrop of luxury hotels, glamorous locations and beautiful scenery, Secrets of a Chalet Girl is a passionate whirlwind of a romance novella – the perfect quick read for a winter weekend away and I predict another big hit for Lorraine Wilson!

5/5

Secrets of a Chalet Girl is released as an ebook on 24th October.

Look out for the third book in the series, Revenge of a Chalet Girl which is out in December!

I’d like to thank HarperImpulse for providing a review copy of this novella via Netgalley.

Find out more about Lorraine and her writing at: http://welcome.lorraine-wilson.com/books.html and at: http://www.harperimpulseromance.com/authors/lorraine-wilson

Book review: Keeping Her by Cora Carmack

22 Oct

What happens after the happy ending?

Garrick is over the moon that his girlfriend, Bliss, said yes. He’s finally found the love of his life. That means his worries are over, right?

But when he invites her to visit London and meet his family, he is presented with a whole new set of problems. How will his privileged and wealthy family react to Bliss’s unique brand of awkwardness?

Keeping Her is the ebook novella follow up to Cora Carmack’s smash hit Losing It. This is quite a substantial novella and it follows Garrick and Bliss as they travel to London to meet Garrick’s family. When I read books, I always wonder what happens to the characters next so I enjoyed being back with Bliss and Garrick again and finding more of their story.

This novella is narrated from dual perspectives with Bliss and Garrick taking it in turns to share their thoughts. The format  worked really well for me and I actually found myself liking Garrick more than I did in Losing It!

Garrick’s family are certainly characters and I thought his ice queen mother was a brilliant character but I was also impressed with the way that Bliss dealt with her and everything else that was thrown at her. Along the way the couple also meet Garrick’s friends and a few of his ex-girlfriends! The combination of Garrick’s upper class English family and Bliss’s clumsy awkwardness makes way for some very funny scenes.

There are also a few surprises in the plot for this book and  I really enjoyed the turns the story took  – I felt they gave me a better understanding of Bliss and Garrick and I really hope Cora Carmack is going to write more about them at some point. After reading this you’ll never worry about ‘meeting the parents’ again!

A fun quick read and a must have for fans of Bliss and Garrick!

4/5

Keeping Her is out now in ebook formats.

I’d like to thank the publisher for providing a review copy via Netgalley.

Find out more about Cora Carmack and her writing at: http://coracarmack.blogspot.co.uk/

Guest post: Bringing a 1930's Hospital to Life by Donna Douglas

21 Oct

Today I’m delighted to welcome lovely Donna Douglas to One More Page. Donna is the author of the best selling Nightingale novels, a series of stories set in an East End hospital in the 1930s. London born and bred, she now lives in York with her husband. They have a grown up daughter.

I really enjoyed The Nightingale Girls when I read it last year and the books have been praised for their authenticity. ‘It’s so real, I almost feel as if I’m on the wards with the nurses,’ says one reviewer. So how did a former journalist and contemporary romance author set about bringing a 1930s hospital so vividly to life? It’s all about the research, she says…

In the past three years, I’ve learned how to apply a capelline bandage, discovered the difference between a Bryant’s splint and a Mackintyre splint, and watched surgical procedures filmed more than 80 years ago. I could now knock up an ice bag or a linseed poultice, and I’d even have a rough idea what to do with a leech.

And it’s all in the name of research.

If you’d told me four years ago that I’d have all this knowledge at my fingertips, I would have said you’d been at the medicinal brandy. Why would a contemporary romance author need to know what a Higginson’s syringe was for? But then The Nightingale novels came along, and suddenly I was thrown into the world of pre-war medicine.

But where to start my research? I decided to go to the top and contacted the Royal College of Nursing. I struck lucky – it turned out they had a huge library of firsthand accounts from nurses dating right back to the early 20th century. They also had hundreds of artefacts, including textbooks, photographs, nursing manuals and even old examination papers. And their lovely staff didn’t mind me asking daft questions (which I did – a lot!). They also put me in touch with their History of Nursing Society, who were incredibly helpful too.

I soon discovered through my research that, like my Nightingale Girls, nurses are close knit bunch. Even after they stop nursing, they stay loyal to their hospital and to each other. I put a call out to the League of Nurses organisations at various hospitals, who were kind enough to arrange for me to meet some of their members. They had all trained in different places and at different times, but one thing they all had in common was their sense of humour! I drank a lot of tea, ate a lot of cake and had a lot of laughs with delightful women who always started off by saying, ‘Well, I don’t know if I can be any help to you, but…’ and then came up with the kind of gems you simply can’t find in any textbook. Many of their stories have found their way into the Nightingale novels, but some are too shocking to put into print!

As well as finding out about the day to day lives of the nurses, I also had to brush up on my pre-war nursing techniques. The internet proved a treasure trove of secondhand nursing textbooks, which  give an amazing insight into the attitudes facing nurses at that time. Take this advice from ‘First Steps in Nursing’, on how nurses should treat doctors: –

‘(Nurses) may not sit down, talk or move about unnecessarily, make any noise, or allow the patients to do so while he is present. They must not address him until he speaks to them first, and then only as ‘sir’, never ‘Mr So-and-so’…They must open and close the door for the doctor’s in-coming and out-going, see that he has water to wash his hands, and wait on him quietly and unobtrusively.’

Can you imagine anyone saying that to a student nurse these days?

As you might have guessed, I love research as much as I love writing (even more, sometimes!). It can be time-consuming to chase after an obscure fact, but it’s well worth it when a former nurses tells me, ‘That’s exactly what it was like in my day.’

And my research never stops, either. So if you’re a former nurse, do come and say hello if we ever meet. I’m always delighted to hear your stories. And if anyone ever needs a leech or a linseed poultice – I’m your woman!

Thank you so much Donna for being my guest today and sharing your research with us!

Donna Douglas’ new novel, The Nightingale Nurses, is released on 24th October in paperback and ebook formats.

You can find out more about Donna’s work by visiting her website – www.donnadouglas.co.uk